Boone Cty, MO: $5.8M for children's mental health

Dec 28, 2017, Columbia (MO) Daily Tribune: County commission approves $5.8M for children’s mental health Revenue garnered from a Boone County sales tax will benefit more than 25 programs providing mental health and social services programs to youth. The Boone County Commission on Thursday approved about $5.8 million in spending from the county’s Children’s Services fund on local programs offering case management, counseling, mental health screenings, out-of-school activities and more. Boone County voters in 2012 approved a permanent quarter-cent sales tax to fund youth mental health services. … The Boone County Schools Mental Health Coalition, a partnership between the county’s six public schools, a private school and the University of Missouri, will receive the most funding at more than $973,000. The coalition screened nearly 23,000 children last year to identify issues related to academic competence, attention, peer relationships, social skills, bullying and suicidal thoughts, among others, according to its 2017 report. Like the year before, the report stated screenings showed children struggled most with academic competence and attention. The coalition also provides group and individual therapy for children, professional coaching and training for teachers and staff and case management. Northern District Commissioner Janet Thompson said the Boone County Schools Mental Health Coalition “goes to the heart” of why the Children’s Services fund exists and that schools have seen a noticeable difference in their students’ behavior since the coalition started its work in 2015. The coalition helps identify children at risk for mental health issues and address their individual issues early, she said.